Petroperu seeks state funds to complete expansion of Talara refinery

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Peruvian state-owned oil firm Petroperu is seeking as much as USD1.5 billion of government funding to complete expansion of its Talara refinery, the company’s president Carlos Paredes said at a press conference, as per Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Paredes said the funds - USD1 billion rolling over previously issued bonds and $500 million in “fresh” financing - would help the facility start operation in the first quarter of 2021.

As MRC informed earlier, Peru’s state-owned energy company will halt operations at its flagship oil refinery Talara for about a year starting in November. Talara will halt operations to complete a USD5 billion expansion project, the company said. Petroperu said it plans to import fuel in that period to ensure demand is met in the Andean country of about 30 million people. It did not specify what kind of fuel it would import.

Peru is a net oil importer. Petroperu said Peru’s fuel imports will fall significantly once the expansion is complete, which it estimated would happen at the end of 2020.

ExxonMobil lets contract for UK refinery upgrade

MOSCOW (MRC) -- ExxonMobil Corp. has let a contract to Fluor Corp. for a series of services related to the operator’s previously announced expansion project to increase production of ultralow-sulfur diesel by nearly 45% at affiliate Esso Petroleum Co. Ltd.’s (EPCL) 270,000-b/d Fawley refinery near Southampton, UK, reported Oil&Gas Journal.

Following its completion of front-end engineering design for the expansion - now known as the Fawley Strategy (FAST) project - Fluor will provide engineering, procurement, fabrication, and construction on a reimbursable basis for the project, the service provider said.

Specifically, Fluor’s scope of work on the project includes design and construction of a new diesel hydrotreater and steam methane-reforming hydrogen plant as well as modifications to unidentified existing installations at the Fawley site.

With EPCL now granted planning permission from local regulatory authority the New Forest District Council Engineering, Fluor said it is currently leading engineering and procurement for the FAST project out of its Farnborough office in the UK.

Construction activities on the FAST expansion are scheduled to start by yearend.

Fluor disclosed neither a value nor duration of the contract.

The contract award follows ExxonMobil’s April final investment decision to proceed with the more than USD1-billion expansion project, which intends to help reduce the need to import diesel into the UK by adding a hydrotreating unit to remove sulfur from fuel, supported by a hydrogen plant that, combined, will also help improve the refinery’s overall energy efficiency.

In addition to logistics improvements, the project will increase ultralow-sulfur diesel production at the site by 38,000 b/d.

Pending regulatory approval, the FAST project is targeted for start-up in 2021.

Situated on the western side of Southampton Water, the Fawley refinery - the UK’s largest - features a mile-long marine terminal that annually handles about 2,000 ship movements and 22 million tonnes of crude and other products.

ExxonMobil previously said the Fawley expansion project comes as part of the company’s broader plans to increase earnings potential of its global downstream business by 2025.

As MRC wrote previously, on 24 September 2019, ExxonMobil Corp shut its 369,024 barrel-per-day (bpd) crude oil refinery in Beaumont, Texas, because of flooding from Tropical Storm Imelda. Exxon earlier that day shut the Beaumont chemical plant, which adjoins the refinery. The company operates a cracker with a capacity of 830,000 mt of ethylene and 195,000 mt of proplyelen per year, low density polyethylene (LDPE) plant with a capacity of 236,000 mt per year and linear low density polyethylene plant with a capacity of 727,000 tonnes per year.

We also remind that in September 2019, ExxonMobil announced plans to spend GBP140 million over the next two years in an additional investment program at its Fife ethylene plant (UK), which has a capacity of more than 800,000 t/y.

Ethylene and propylene are feedstocks for producing polyethylene (PE) and PP.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 1,589,580 tonnes in the first nine months of 2019, up by 7% year on year. Shipments of all PE grades increased. The estimated PP consumption in the Russian market was 976,790 tonnes in January-September 2019, up by 4% year on year. Shipments of PP block copolymer and homopolymer PP increased.

ExxonMobil is the largest non-government owned company in the energy industry and produces about 3% of the world's oil and about 2% of the world's energy.

DSM to launch engineering plastics using 25% bio-based/recycled material

MOSCOW (MRC) -- DSM is pledging to offer a full alternative range of engineering plastics based on bio- and/or recycled materials by 2030, the company said.

The producer will offer a full portfolio of alternatives with at least 25% of the weight of the products made of recycled and/or bio-based material in line with consumer and legislative demands.

Different technologies including fermentation, mechanical recycling and mass balance accounting (which assesses how to allocate sustainable materials) of bio-based and/or chemically recycled feedstock.

Some of the new bio-based products were launched at K Trade Fair this year, which ran in Dusseldorf, Germany on 16-23 October.

DSM Engineering Plastics is launching bio-based grades of its Arnitel® and Stanyl® product portfolio manufactured via a mass-balancing approach of bio-based feedstock. The Stanyl bio-based grades are already available with the globally recognized sustainability certification ISCC Plus. Joost d’Hooghe, Vice President Polyamides at DSM Engineering Plastics said: “Our Arnitel and Stanyl bio-based alternatives will deliver the same functional performance as our conventional portfolio. This will enable our customers to easily shift to a more sustainable solution without having to requalify materials."

As MRC informed earlier, Royal DSM, a global science-based company in Nutrition, Health and Sustainable Living, announced the strengthening of its leadership in high-performance specialty polymers with the operational launch of a new production line for Arnitel in Emmen, the Netherlands.

Royal DSM is a global science-based company active in health, nutrition and materials. DSM delivers innovative solutions that nourish, protect and improve performance in global markets such as food and dietary supplements, personal care, feed, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, automotive, paints, electrical and electronics, life protection, alternative energy and bio-based materials.

Celanese signs strategic agreement with Chinese firm on R&D

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Celanese Corporation, a global chemical and specialty materials company, and Beijing Oriental Yuhong Waterproof Technology Co., Ltd., announced they have signed a comprehensive strategic cooperation and development agreement, reported Kemicalinfo.

The agreement aims to further expand cooperation in product research and development, expansion into emerging markets, and the advancement of industry, safety and environmental protection practices and sustainability.

Key components of the strategic cooperation agreement include the sharing of information and practices in the use of emulsions for waterproofing applications. Additionally, the companies will evaluate where Celanese can develop new product applications for use in Oriental Yuhong’s waterproofing business. Furthermore, the companies will begin the sharing of product development information and engage in discussions around plant productivity and sustainability in order to drive cost savings and identify potential opportunities for improving production and operational sustainability. Finally, the companies are expected to evaluate potential new supply arrangements in the Asia-Pacific region.

"Celanese and Oriental Yuhong have been working together commercially for more than a decade in the area of emulsions and vinyl acetate chemistry and this strategic cooperation agreement is the next logical step in our business relationship," said Florian Kohl, Celanese Vice President, VAM and Emulsions.

As MRC informed earlier, Celanese Corporation experienced an emergency incident at approximately 12:00 noon Central time on Saturday, Sept. 21, at the Celanese Clear Lake facility in Pasadena, Texas. On-site emergency personnel extinguished the fire quickly, and appropriate regulatory and first responder agencies were notified and mobilized at the scene to support the incident. All Celanese, site partner and contractor employees are accounted for and no injuries were reported. No shelter in place was issued, and the emergency was cleared at 4:30 p.m. local time.

According to MRC's DataScope report, September EVA imports to Russia fell by 22,7% year on year to 3,420 tonnes from 4,430 tonnes in September 2018, and overall imports of this grade of ethylene copolymer into the Russian Federation decreased in January-September 2019 by 18,2% year on year to 29,190 tonnes (35,690 tonnes in the first nine months of 2018).

Celanese Corporation is a global technology leader in the production of differentiated chemistry solutions and specialty materials used in most major industries and consumer applications. Based in Dallas, Celanese employs approximately 7,700 employees worldwide and had 2018 net sales of USD7.2 billion.

Gazprom Neft implements the worlds best refining technologies at its Omsk Refinery

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The Gazprom Neft Omsk Refinery has taken delivery of 10 pieces of cutting-edge high-tech equipment for construction of a delayed coking unit, as per the company's press release.

This new equipment is designed to produce components for automotive gasoline. Gazprom Neft’s investment in this project — which forms part of a programme to develop a delayed coking complex at the Omsk Refinery, including construction of a new facility, as well as reconstruction of the existing one — now stands at more than RUB50 billion. Construction is due for completion by 2021.

The use of cutting-edge technologies is making possible a four-fold increase in the production of a high-quality raw material used in the aluminium industry — petroleum coke. One of the key outcomes of implementing this project will be its environmental impact: the delayed coking complex’s total environmental impact will be halved, while production volumes will increase. The two-million-tonne-capacity future facility will, together with the plant’s other modernisation projects, take refining depth (the "conversion factor") at the Omsk Refinery to 97% — among the best in the world.

The delayed coking unit now under construction is designed to process heavy petroleum feedstock, whereby pre-heated tar is separated into light fractions and ultra-heavy tar. Light hydrocarbons are sent to be processed into commercial oil products — motor fuels — while the ultra-heavy tar is turned into coke. The produced coke is in considerable demand by the aluminium and electrical engineering industries.

Gazprom Neft is currently involved in a full-scale modernisation programme at its Omsk and Moscow refineries, involving cumulative investment of more than RUB550 billion. The first stage of this programs has involved the construction and reconstruction of key technological facilities, allowing the complete transition to the production of Euro ?5 fuels, significantly improving energy efficiency and environmental friendliness in production. The implementation of the second phase of this modernisation programme is now ongoing, as a result of which the refining depth and light product yield are expected to exceed those of leading global producers.

As MRC informed earlier, Gazprom Neft and the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) have entered into a Framework Agreement on Strategic Cooperation. The companies will explore opportunities for implementing joint projects in the upstream and downstream sectors, as well as in information technologies, artificial intelligence, and other areas.

Ethylene and propylene are feedstocks for producing polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP).

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 1,589,580 tonnes in the first nine months of 2019, up by 7% year on year. Shipments of all PE grades increased. The estimated PP consumption in the Russian market was 976,790 tonnes in January-September 2019, up by 4% year on year. Shipments of PP block copolymer and homopolymer PP increased.